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Charlie Hatton
Brookline, MA

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Howdy, friendly reading person!
I'm on a bit of a hiatus right now, but only to work on other projects -- one incredibly exciting example being the newly-released kids' science book series Things That Make You Go Yuck!
If you're a science and/or silliness fan, give it a gander! See you soon!

Who Else Would Tell You About the ‘Fringe Benefits’?

Well, shit on a Chiclet, people — I didn’t expect that.

Seriously. I thought I was just writing a whimsical little ditty about phone screening. But a handful of people were nice enough to take the time to comment, and all of them (or ‘one of you’, if you’re on the list) wanted to know about the job.

(Yeah, sure, I know — I did call on people to reach out and get their resumes in. But how the hell could I know people would take me vaguely seriously? I mean, it’s never happened before. Hell, I had to propose to my wife six times before she decided I meant it. Who knew?)

Anyway, just to satisfy your curiousity (not to mention my word quota for tonight’s post), here’s the actual job listing that I’m hiring for… with my own comments in parentheses. You just knew I couldn’t resist a few sets of parentheses, didn’t you?

Position Description:

The candidate will produce designs and code to satisfy user needs within the (<name removed to cover my sorry ass>) group. Initial assignments will concentrate on our SNP discovery work, specifically handling complex strategic reporting and sequencing pipeline assignments. (Sadly — and much to my own initial chagrin — ‘SNP’ does not, in fact, stand for ‘Sorority Nipple Parties’. So yeah, I was pretty disappointed, too.)

The candidate must be comfortable with the molecular biology domain, including sequencing pipelines and genotyping pipelines. (And don’t forget the ‘kissing my ass’ pipeline. Once we build it, of course.)

S/he must have a proven track record of successful delivery of accurate product and application deliverables in an intense work environment. (I’m not exactly sure what an ‘intense work environment’ entails. But I assure you that in our office, we hardly ever work with guns pointed at our heads, or fat guys sitting on us, or rabid Bengali tigers chasing us down the hall. Sometimes the fat guy in the corner office chases us down the hall, but he’s relatively harmless. And he never has a gun. Almost never, anyway.)

In the (<again, name removed, in the interest of my own self-preservation>) group, employees are responsible for proactively gathering requirements, writing specifications, creating designs, and delivering production quality code. In other words, this is not a position where the developer will be handed a detailed spec to code — the developer must proactively seek out and collaborate with users in order to rapidly produce the desired deliverables. (In other words… here’s your desk. Good luck, there, cupcake.)

Position Duties

  • Work closely with users to gather requirements and frequent feedback through demos, mockups, and scenario-based prototypes. (Funny, I don’t see ‘wash my car’ in there; who wrote this fricking description, anyway?)
  • In consultation with architects and project lead, build task lists and schedules with frequent, concrete milestones (And no, dammit, ‘showing up to work sober’ does not count as a milestone, no matter how frequently it happens. Or doesn’t.)
  • Deliver on time, on target functionality to end users. (And deliver on-time, on-target yummery pizza to my office for lunch every day. Me likey extra pepperoni, new minion. On the double, now.)
  • Ensure that own priorities and goals align with the high priority team goals. (So, of course, the challenge here is this — how on earth can you make ‘find a way to get the girls in the shared office to kiss each other’ a ‘high priority team goal’? For the life of me, I haven’t figured that one out. Yet.)


  • Computer Science or equivalent undergraduate degree. 4 years software development experience. Knowledge of genomics a necessity. (It would also help a lot if you can juggle. Oh, and if you have a keggerator. And maybe a cool car, too. You like the Red Sox? Yeah. That’s good, too.)
  • Experience with commercial reporting products a plus.(I’m pretty sure that TiVo does not count as a ‘commercial reporting product’, by the way.)
  • Must have excellent written and verbal communications skills, excellent problem-solving skills and people skills, collaborative skills. (Hmmm… yeah, that would be nice, wouldn’t it? Hell, somebody in this place oughta do all those things. Might as well be the newbie.)
  • Must be able to deal with a rapidly-changing and high-demand environment. (Yep, it’s rapidly changing, all right — every couple of weeks, I go through the offices at night and exchange all the chairs. And all the books and papers. And the signs on the mens and womens bathrooms. You probably don’t want to ask what I do with the phone receivers. It’s neither pretty nor entirely mess-free. And it smarts a little, if I don’t do it just right. Yeah, just… just don’t ask.)

So, there you have it, all you interested parties. I can almost hear the flood of resumes surging my way right now. Get ’em in quick to avoid the rush, folks. And remember — a couple of twenties paper-clipped to the cover letter goes a long way further than actually meeting any of those pesky requirement thingies. Man, maybe this hiring business isn’t so bad, after all.

Permalink  |  1 Comment

One Response to “Who Else Would Tell You About the ‘Fringe Benefits’?”

  1. glory says:

    Either my head’s in a perpetual slant or a tag wasn’t closed…just a heads up ;D

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